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Serving Courtenay, BC and Surrounding Areas

After Hours Service Available


Serving Courtenay, BC and Surrounding Areas


Temprite Climate Solutions Blog

Figuring Out What Those Strange AC Noises Mean


An air conditioning system that’s making more noise than it used to, or is making unusual noises it hasn’t before, is a reason for concern. It may not mean that it’s time for a new AC installation in Courtenay, BC to replace the air conditioner, but it often indicates a need for repairs from expert technicians.

In this post, we’ll examine some of those out-of-the-ordinary sounds that might come from your air conditioner and what they mean. When in doubt, go straight to calling for professional repairs rather than tinker with the AC yourself. Making an accurate diagnosis of air conditioning problems is something only trained technicians can do. Amateur work risks getting the problem wrong, and therefore getting the “repair” wrong.

Mechanical shrieking and grinding

These noises are common problems with moving parts in the air conditioner wearing down and reaching the point of complete failure. Most of the time, these sounds come from one of the motors, which power the two sets of fans and the compressor. Shrieking is the sound of the bearings in a motor wearing down. The bearings help protect the motor from its own vibrations, and when the bearings are gone, the motor will start to fail. Grinding can mean a motor that’s burning out. Call soon to have these fixed (and turn off the AC). The quicker we can get on the job, the less likely we’ll have to make a full motor replacement.


The sound of hissing like gas escaping from a line is a big warning sign of refrigerant leaks. Air conditioners keep a set amount of refrigerant to work, and any drop in refrigerant levels puts the entire system in danger. HVAC technicians must locate where the leaking is occurring, seal the leaks, and then recharge how much refrigerant was lost.

Clanging and banging

If you’re hearing sounds like someone is taking a hammer to the inside of the air conditioner, it usually means something is wrong with the blower fan or the outside fan: the blades might be bent, the fan could be loose. Shut off the AC at the circuit breaker to stop the problem from creating more damage and contact technicians.


A rattling sound from the inside compressor may be as basic as a loose cabinet door. Close it and latch it again. If the sound continues, there may be a loose part somewhere. If the outside cabinet is rattling, it may be loose on it slab. Another possibility is that the compressor is vibrating and in danger of failure—this call for a fast repair because a broken compressor is a serious problem.


A bit of clicking is normal as an air conditioning system starts up. But if you hear it often and the air conditioner is struggling to get going, the clicking sound can mean that capacitors are going bad. Capacitors often wear out before the rest of the AC, so it’s a standard repair to have technicians replace older ones.

This is only a guide to help you understand when you have an AC repair issue. Leave the actual diagnosis and repairs to our team.

For a job done right, call Temprite! Temprite Climate Solutions have after-hours service available when you have an air conditioning emergency.

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